2004: The year I become a whistleblower

By 2004 I had spent 3 years with the unit and was frequently investigating, through my computer business, stolen IT equipment that arrived for servicing at my store. This was a standard practice as I developed various techniques in order to recover stolen IT equipment and link them to criminal cases. As I was a reservist, based on the critical organized crime unit at the time, I could easily obtain information and investigate criminal cases as well as arrest suspects, as well as logging my minimum required hours in order to remain a police reservist. Fighting crime and arresting criminals became something of a hobby for me. It was a way to give back a valuable service to the community.

One such case was case no  297/02/04 which unknowingly to me at the time, made me a whistleblower.

On that particular day I called the members of my unit to come and arrest a suspect in possession of a stolen Dell laptop linked to First National Bank corporation as well as a car hijacking. I was allowed to accompany members of the unit to the Cato Manor offices because I was the investigating officer on the case at first.

At the time I was in possession of one of the first smart cell phones with a basic camera attached to it.

Realising that the suspect was about to be tortured by the members since I remembered my previous experience back in 1998 as a civilian, of seeing a suspect being tortured at the Murder and Robbery Unit office, I took out my phone, pressed the external ring tone that made the phone sound like someone was calling me and pretended to speak to my mother in Greece. At the same time, I had pointed the phone’s camera towards the torture scene, and I managed to take three video clips of probably the only recorded video of torture being carried out at the Cato Manor Unit’s office! Had they realised that I was recording it I would have been dead. As a whistleblower that was the point of no return for me, since I had identified wrongdoing at the place of work, I took action to secure evidence and report corruption.

Video Evidence: General Booysen has claimed in the past that my videos are fake, here’s the proof that they are not. Please note that the metadata is from the original videos in my possession.

Video 1 

 Video 2

 Video 3

 

I decided to make an internal disclosure and took the video to Booysen, my commanding officer and supposedly my friend at the time, in order to do an internal reporting of wrongdoing. Booysen laughed about it, asked for a copy, and replied: “That’s how my boys get results.” He further asked me to make him a copy because he wanted to keep it as a backup against one of the members he had a beef with, Inspector Viresh Panday.

Booysen did nothing to investigate the torture by his own members of the Cato Manor Unit . Instead, he tipped them off about it and that made my life difficult. Soon afterwards I was attacked in my workshop and had to fight for my life.

From then on, the unit’s members were distant and every time I was visiting their offices they would collect our cell phones in a bucket . That way they were making certain that no more atrocities and human rights violations committed by them, were documented via cell phone cameras or sound recordings.